Weekend round-up: Sudbury draw with title favourites Mallards while Halstead suffer another defeat

DARREN Batch’s 99 with the bat helped Sudbury on their way to a very credible draw at home to Vauxhall Mallards on Saturday, while Halstead lost by seven wickets at Saffron Walden.

Sudbury posted 255 all out from 63.4 overs with James Pulson (34), Will Shropshire (30), and a late cameo from Billy Moulton-Day (29), all weighing in to add to their skipper Batch’s impressive personal tally.

In reply, Mallards, who were top of the league at the start of the day, were kept in check by overseas star Hasantha Fernando with five wickets (17-0-66-5) and Jonny Gallagher with two (17-3-62-2), to restrict them to 234-9 after their 56 overs.

The Talbot’s Batch and Ben Hyett picked up the other wickets with Mallards having been on 192-5.

The result leaves Sudbury in sixth position in the East Anglian Premier League, with Mallards dropping to 4th after the general draw.

Halstead are second bottom (10th) after a seven wicket defeat to Saffron Walden on the road, their second defeat from two completed matches.

Tom Philp’s Halstead side won the toss and decided to bat and reached a decent looking 237-8 after their 66 overs.

Stand-out scores came from Philp (71), Charlie Douglas-Hughes (82) and Mark Johnson (34).

In reply, Walden passed the target set from 43.1 overs with Glen Batticciotto leading the victory charge with 113no.

Philp (11-2-53-1) and Sam Walter (3-0-12-1) both took a wicket apiece.

* FOR a full round-up of local sports results, including match action, reaction and previews to the week ahead, as well as our review of AFC Sudbury’s 2011/12 campaign, see Thursday’s Suffolk Free Press.